Caller explains stark reality he faces due to Universal Credit cut

6 October 2021, 13:04 | Updated: 6 October 2021, 14:22

EJ Ward

By EJ Ward

This is the moment one caller explained the harsh reality of having to go without food for days due to the cut to Universal Credit.

A £20-per-week uplift to the benefit that was introduced at the start of the coronavirus pandemic ended on Wednesday, leaving recipients £1,040 worse off per year.

Speaking to LBC's James O'Brien one caller was able to give a first-hand account of how the cut would impact him and his family.

Rob from Rochester explained he was severely dyslexic, a father of two and a carer for his disabled mother.

His daily travel bills for visiting his mother and getting his children to school would cost him £6.00 a day.

Read more: Dominic Raab denies £20 UC cut will force families into stark 'heat or eat' choice

The Government has been pressing ahead with the cut despite concerns that hundreds of thousands of people will be plunged into poverty.

He told James that he stops at his mother's house halfway between his children's school and home because he couldn't afford to do it any other way.

"The petrol crisis has caused me to have to go without food in order to make sure I have enough money for fuel," the caller explained.

Read more: Boris Johnson: I will tackle 'underlying problems' when no other Govt had the 'guts' to

He told James that the current uplift to Universal Credit helps him pay for his road tax.

James asked the caller what losing the £20.00 a week would mean to him.

"Come my next payday, I will then have to find some way of not spending an additional £20.00, which will mean I have to go 2 or 3 days without eating.

"Because I can't afford to buy food."

Rob set out the stark reality for him and his two daughters, explaining his weekly food budget was around £25.00.

Earlier on LBC, Deputy Prime Minister Dominic Raab denied people would have to face the choice between heating or eating.

"The heating I get paid through Universal Credit, so I'm just going to wrack up a massive bill."

But he said anyone on a pre-payment system would be "absolutely screwed."

From Wednesday, no assessments will include the uplift, meaning that from October 13 - a week later - no payments will be received that include the extra money.

The cut will be staggered over 31 days as families receive payments on different dates, Save the Children said.

Just over 3.5 million children in the UK are living in households that receive UC payments, according to Government figures.

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